By Tom Precious
ALBANY -- The Legislature's top Democrat accused Senate Republicans of lying about gun control negotiations and being too cozy with the gun lobby.
Responding to complaints by Senate Republicans that the Democrats only want to crack down on gun sales and not do anything about bolstering punishments for crimes involving illegal guns, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver called the claim "an outright lie.'' He suggested the Assembly has, in talks with Senate Republicans and Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, offered new penalty provisions for illegal gun crimes.
"The Senate has been very responsive to the gun lobby and uses these lies in order to avoid the truth, which is they want to be responsive to the gun lobby,'' Silver said today at the Capitol.
Still, he described the gun negotiations under way at the Capitol as "meaningful."
How can that be, he was asked, when he just called Senate Republicans a group of liars? "Well, they're lying to the press. That's not a crime,'' Silver said.